With Governor Pat Quinn scheduled to give his budget address Wednesday, the director of the state's agriculture department says he's expecting another round of budget cuts. Bob Flider says his agency has seen its state funding cut in half, from 41-billion dollars five years ago to about 21-billion in the current budget year. Flider says the department is looking into alternative funding, like by soliciting foundation grants:
"Our hope is that when it's all said and done we can hold our own. And I think that's critical from the standpoint of the mandates that we have, making sure that food is safe, making sure that animal feed is safe."
Flider could not give examples of where the department's looking for private donations.
He says in the meantime, the Department of Agriculture is trying to be more efficient by working with other agencies, like it did during last year's drought.
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